Amid a slumping real estate market, HouseValues Inc. is cutting 12 percent of its work force and closing its online lead generation business for mortgages.Also, HouseValues stock is down another 46% since I last mentioned them nine months ago. Maybe it's just me, but now doesn't exactly seem like the best of times to be building a business centered around real estate sales.
Sixty employees are losing their jobs, all at the company's Kirkland headquarters.
In a memo to employees, HouseValues Chief Executive Ian Morris said that the company has encountered a number of challenges because of a "steep decline in transaction volume in many local real estate markets."
A HouseValues employee, who was not involved in the layoffs and asked not to be identified, said that "morale has been very low and a lot of people have been quitting from all departments." As of September, the company employed 590 people. But the employee count has drifted lower in recent months as people have left for other jobs.
(John Cook, Seattle P-I, 01.25.2007)